Disaster Recovery and Redevelopment Plans

A sense of complacency exists among many coastal Georgia residents due to the fact that the coast has not been hit by a major storm in many years. However, the Georgia Coastal Management Program (GCMP) and local municipalities are well aware of the importance of creating disaster resilient communities and the need to incorporate long-term planning for natural disasters into state and local management processes. Currently, gaps exist in education, policies, data and research; all of which are deemed a high priority for the GCMP.

It is critical that preparations be initiated to adapt and reduce our vulnerabilities to the inevitable natural disaster and potential change from sea-level rise. At present, GCMP completed a document to guide the coast in community redevelopment after a major natural disaster (e.g. building setbacks, building repair restrictions, shoreline hardening or retreat, and redevelopment of publicly funded infrastructure). The guide also evaluates the need for new or revised state policies on the post-disaster repair and rebuilding of permitted piers, docks, and marinas. This model document can be used as a guidance document to prepare post-disaster redevelopment plans for the entire 11 coastal county area, the Coastal Regional Commission, the Georgia Emergency Management Agency, and other stakeholders.  This guide addresses issues related to coastal storms, sea-level rise, and marine debris hazards. To view the guidance document, please click here!

Completed DRRPs

Chatham County completed their DRRP in 2015, which can be viewed by clicking here for the Recovery Plan and here for the Redevelopment Plan.

Brantley County completed their DRRP in 2016, which can be viewed by clicking here.

Glynn County completed their DRRP in 2017, which can be viewed by clicking here.

Camden County completed their DRRP in 2021, which can be viewed by clicking here

McIntosh County received a Coastal Incentive Grant to complete their DRRP in 2018.  The final document can be viewed by clicking here.

Coastal Resiliency Grant Program (2015-2020)

The Georgia Coastal Management Program received a total of $412,000 in federal funding from the NOAA Coastal Resiliency Grant Program to further the mission of completing Disaster Recovery and Redevelopment Plans (DRRP) for the remaining 7 coastal counties, which include Bryan County, Camden County, Charlton County, Effingham County, Liberty County, Long County, and Wayne County.  The completion of the DRRPs for these counties will make Georgia the first state in the nation to have a completely resilient coast through recovery and redevelopment planning!

Rebuilding a community after a catastrophic disaster or major storm event, such as Hurricane Matthew and Hurricane Irma, is a monumental undertaking. The most effective way to accomplish holistic post-disaster recovery and redevelopment is to be prepared before a disaster strikes. Developing a DRRP requires envisioning the potential obstacles to reconstructing a community in a compressed timeline and not just reconstructing what was there, but redeveloping a more sustainable and disaster-resilient community.

The purpose of a recovery and redevelopment plan should be to guide the post-disaster recovery and redevelopment processes in a manner consistent with local plans, mitigation strategies, emergency management plans, or other relevant codes or planning initiatives. Each of the categories of existing plans or policies will have an impact on post-disaster recovery and redevelopment procedures. For instance, a long-term community development plan may identify how the government should support small business owners or which areas of the community are most important to economic well-being, which would affect the manner in which resources would be allocated following a disaster.

Recovery and redevelopment plans can only be successful with input from the local communities for which they are designed. Participation from stakeholders and the general public is vital during plan development as well as during the implementation and plan update phases. Recovery and redevelopment plans outline strategies intended to fulfill the purpose of healing the community after a disaster, which must align with the community’s values and vision. Citizens across the entire community must be engaged in the process of establishing that vision. Each community participating in this project will engage key stakeholders and ensure their participation through every step of the process. There are two measures of success for these projects. The first being the stakeholder participation, which not only gives purpose to the project, but also achieves buy-in and provides ownership. Secondly, when the time comes to implement these plans, communities will be more fully prepared to come back stronger and more resilient. This project will assess risk vulnerabilities based on each county and jurisdiction’s needs, capacity, technology, staff, and more. Each ocean-facing community will also look at sea-level rise and shoreline change hotspots as a vulnerability where appropriate.

The table below outlines the timeline for the major tasks and outcomes over the next 3 years:

Time Period



October 1, 2017

Grant Approval

Begin project

December 31, 2017

Complete bidding process

Contractor hired

Jan – June 2018

Charlton County Coordination

Complete Charlton County DRRP

April – Sept 2018

Camden County Coordination

Complete Camden County DRRP

July – Dec 2018

Wayne County Coordination

Complete Wayne County DRRP

Oct 2018 – March 2019

Long County Coordination

Complete Long County DRRP

Jan – June 2019

Liberty County Coordination

Complete Liberty County DRRP

April – Sept 2019

Bryan County Coordination

Complete Bryan County DRRP

July – Dec 2019

Effingham County Coordination

Complete Effingham County DRRP

Jan – April 2020

Final Coordination and Review

All DRRPs in final form and ready for outreach/distribution

May – September 2020

Outreach and Education

Conference collaboration and outreach publications and events